I’m in the thick of it. I work full time, and I have an almost three-year-old and a seven-month-old. I wake up exhausted, and I struggle to find the energy to get everything done each day. It’s tough. The baby crying, the toddler whining, and the husband needing can sometimes altogether just be too much. But then a moment happens. My oldest asks me to play with her and tells me she loves me. My youngest coos and smiles from ear to ear when she sees me walk in the room. My husband notices my outfit and does the dishes without me asking. And before I can even process my emotions, my heart becomes so full of love I can hardly stand it.
And then it hits me straight in the face. One day they won’t need me. I’m so focused on getting everything done and being everything for all of them right now that when I think about how things will be different in the next weeks, months, and years, I almost can’t handle it.
One day the toddler won’t need me to get her dressed in the morning, and she won’t throw a fit when she doesn’t get to wear her Elsa nightgown to school. One day she won’t need me to help brush her teeth or tie her shoes. One day she’ll get her own snacks and make her own meals. One day she won’t need me to help her go potty. One day she won’t need me to wash, brush, and fix her hair. And one day… She won’t need me to read her stories, sing her songs, or pray with her before bed. I think I’ll miss that one the most.
One day the baby won’t need to nurse anymore, and I’ll miss those quiet moments we have each night before bed. One day she won’t need me to move her from place to place because she’ll learn to crawl and walk – before any of us are ready for it, I’m sure. One day she won’t need me to stand up to her sister for her, for she’ll be big enough to do it on her own. One day there will be no more firsts, just minutes upon hours upon days.
One day I’ll get to spend alone time with my husband whenever I want. One day we’ll have conversations without anyone interrupting us. One day there will be no toys to pick up at the end of a long day. One day we’ll be able to go on vacation to far away places at the drop of a hat. One day we’ll look into each other’s eyes and wish it hadn’t gone by so fast.
And while all of this is true, thankfully, they’ll always be my babies. So even though they won’t need me as much as they do now, they will hopefully need me for even more important things in the future.
My mom and dad are still some of my greatest supporters and have been there for all of life’s important milestones, and I plan on doing the same for my girls. So while there are a lot of things I’ll miss, there are also a million things that I’m looking forward to. I can’t wait for them to stop whining, to do the dishes, and to be the ones to drive me around. I can’t wait to watch them become the best of friends. I can’t wait to watch them discover themselves and their passions. I can’t wait to support them through their personal and professional successes. And I can’t wait to sit back and think to myself that all of our hard work has paid off and that all of the long days were worth every, single second.
I know I’m not alone. What will you miss most from this season of motherhood, and what are you most excited about in the years to come?